Friday, February 21, 2014

Celebrating Vision & Patience

From nearly the beginning of this publication, over six years ago, we've occasionally given both credit and blame where due. We've also paused to count moments of successes and failures.

This week, the number of successes we've been counting has been much greater than normal.

There were plenty of successes at the Winter Olympics this week, even as the games head to a close this weekend. There were national political successes too, like President Obama pulling Chained CPI out of his 2015 budget plans, or California beating their Obamacare sign-up goal nearly six weeks early.

There were personal successes for our staff too, as our editor Amy celebrated the birthday of her eldest daughter, even as we celebrated having her input back among our staff. Our webmaster Shawn & his wife celebrated getting a brand new Ford Fusion Energi by getting nearly 80 miles per gallon this week. Of course, we all celebrated the decision by Nebraska Judge Stephanie Stacy, that a 2012 Nebraska law is unconstitutional, meaning the Keystone XL pipeline is at a standstill in Nebraska, at least for the time being.

None of these successes happened overnight, and they all took an enormous amount of patience, dedication, hard work, and vision. For example, Meryl Davis and Charlie White, America's first gold medal-winning ice dancing team ever had been working for seventeen years on the success they finally achieved this week.

The Keystone pipeline fight has gone on for a good number of years too, and it doesn't look to be over anytime soon. Because of the delays caused by a lack of vision by some Keystone XL pipeline supporters like Gov. Heineman and Republicans in the Nebraska Legislature, a majority of U.S. voters are now asking important questions about the pipeline. Some of those questions include wanting to know where the oil will go, and what their lawmakers actually know about the pipeline.

The same lack of vision that seems to have Americans outside of Nebraska finally paying attention to the pipeline battle has also brought more attention to fuel efficiency standards in the U.S.

After a banner 2013 for hybrid and pure electric cars, sales of those kinds of vehicles for manufacturers like Ford, Tesla, and Toyota have stayed strong so far this year. President Obama also used his executive authority this week to raise the federal fuel standards for heavy-duty trucks over the next few years.

This positive focus on renewable energy was also easily seen in the most recent report by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, pointed out to us by journalist Michael Grunwald on Twitter. "Of the 325 MW of new US power generation in January, only 324 MW were renewable," Grunwald noted.

That's not perfect - but it's a good way to start the year, especially when there are plenty of horrendous news stories happening all over the world.

From the violent revolutions happening in both the Ukraine and Venezuela, to the ongoing environmental disasters in North Carolina and West Virginia, to yet another nasty winter storm in parts of the Midwest and Ohio Valley - not every story in life is a gold medal-winning success.

If you take the time, put forward the effort, have the patience and the vision though…

Like we said: There are plenty of reasons to celebrate this weekend. We hope you find some of your own.